What I Use

Last Updated: July 2021

Microsoft Surface Laptop 2

While my desktop PC is my daily driver for work, there are times I want to be able to work in the garden, or at a local bar or cafe (I know, it’s a terrible life), or for when I’m travelling or having meetings, and need something bigger and more powerful than the Gemini PDA or Cosmo Communicator (see below).  For this, and after several years of owning, and loving a Dell XPS 13, I opted for the Microsoft Surface Laptop 2, with an eighth-generation Core i7 processor, 16GB Ram and 512GB of storage, all wrapped in a gorgeous black case with an alcantara keyboard surround.

Microsoft Surface Pro 7

Purchased to use specifically with Microsoft Whiteboard when teaching or presenting during online meetings and talks, this all black machine, with a tenth-generation Core i7 processor, 16GB Ram, 512GB of storage and with the optional keyboard and pen, is also used when I’m relaxing at home or in the garden.

Planet Computers Cosmo Communicator

My main mobile device is Planet Computers’ follow-up to the highly successful Gemini PDA.  It’s called the Cosmo Communicator and includes an external touchscreen, biometric fingerprint reader, 24MP camera, backlit keyboard and has an upgraded processor, memory and storage. I work closely with Planet Computers and have also written the Official User Guide for both the Gemini PDA, and the Cosmo Communicator.

F(x)Tek Pro¹

Because of my love of keyboards on mobile devices, as collectible items as much as anything else, to accompany my Cosmo Commuicator I also use an F(x)Tek Pro¹ smartphone.  This is a great looking device that I’ll use when I don’t need the superior keyboard on the Cosmo, or when I’ll be out using apps such as mapping and GPS.  You can find out more about the F(x)Tek Pro¹ HERE.

Self-Build Desktop PC

My current desktop PC was built in July 2021 and was definitely the most powerful PC I’ve owned yet, used for both work and gaming.  Powered by a 7nm AMD Ryzen 9 5950X processor, and with 64GB 4000MHz DDR4 RAM, 6TB PCIe 4 NMVe M.2 drives with Windows in a 4TB RAID 0 array for speed, and a Radeon RX6800 graphics card.  All built into a case that has top-mounted USB-A and USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 sockets to take advantage of the capabilities of the Gigabyte x570 AORUS Master motherboard.








LG 38WK95C Ultrawide Curved Monitor

I bought this 38-inch, 21:9 ultrawide, curved monitor both for gaming (I play Elite: Dangerous a lot) but also for work (spreadsheets look amazing).  It has a resolution of 3840 x 1600 and provides an excellent wrap-around workspace.  Find out more about the LG 38WK95C monitor.






Bose Companion 50 Speakers

I take my music as seriously as my gaming, and buy 24-bit audio online.  My speakers therefore had to be great, so I chose the Bose Companion 50 PC speaker 2.1 set.  Find out more about the Bose Companion 50 Speakers.

Intel NUC Abel M2

Tucked away, strapped to the back of my living room TV, and running Windows 7 Media Centre is an Intel NUC that I use just for watching TV and video.  It has a Core i5 processor with 8GB Ram and a 250GB M.2 SSD.  This PC is enrolled in extended service for Windows 7.

Synology DiskStation DS418

For storage at my home / office, and for video streaming I rely on a Synology DiskStation DS418, 4-bay NAS drive equipped with 56TB of storage in a mirrored array.  I’ve had a variety of NAS drives over the years but this is my first four-bay unit.  Find out more about the Synology DiskStation DS418.

Microsoft Xbox One X

Okay I’ll admit it, I won this in a Microsoft giveaway.  I’m not complaining though.  It might not get used much for games, though we’ve enjoyed Elite: Dangerous, Cuphead, and Star Wars Battlefront on it.  I use it mostly to watch 4K Blu-Ray movies, and it’s an excellent player.  Find out more about the Microsoft Xbox One X.

Bose Home Sound System

I have a home sound system comprised of several Amazon Echo Dots; one with a battery pack so it can be used in the garden, and two Alexa-capable Bose Home Speaker 500 systems.  There is also a Bose SoundTouch SA-5 Internet-connected amplifier connected to Bose 251 outdoor speakers.  These can be controlled by voice from any of the Alexa devices, allowing me to play music, audiobooks, and radio in the garden.

Bowers & Wilkins PX Headphones

I buy and enjoy 24-bit audio so the quality of the speakers and headphones I use is very important to me.  For travel and light use I have Bose in-ear headphones, but for everything else I use the Bowers & Wilkins PX wireless headphones because of Bowers & Wilkins’ almost legendary reputation among audiophiles, and for the build quality, comfort, and quality of these portable, noise-cancelling headphones.

Olympus LS14 and LS100 Audio Recorders

When I’m recording video courseware I need top of the line recording equipment, and for this I turn to my Olympus LS14 and LS100 professional recorders.  Find out more about high-end Olympus audio recorders.



  1. March 11, 2021

    @Bose @Xbox @Microsoft @LG_Gear @intel @BowersWilkins @Synology @thefxtec Thanks for your support Mike!

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